- Research the organisation: browse its website.
- Review the job description, person specification and your CV / application form.
- Think of examples when you have demonstrated these skills and qualities in your previous work or personal life.
- Consider what questions you might be asked and prepare appropriate responses.
- Prepare a list of questions to ask the interviewer: do not ask about salary, working hours or holidays until you have received a job offer, but BEFORE you accept!
The Employer’s Perspective:
- Are you able to do the job? (CAN)
- Know your strengths / skills / competencies / experience.
- Know your skills stories.
- Do you want the job? (WILL)
- Know your motivation.
- Evidence that you really want it.
- Why are you the best person for the job and our company? (FIT)
2. Dress to Impress:
- Do not smoke or drink alcohol before the interview.
- Body odour: interviews are stressful so use anti-perspirant or deodorant, mouthwash, and very light or no perfume / aftershave.
- Make sure your clothes are neatly pressed and clean.
- Dress smart and keep it simple.
- Stay with solid colours rather than patterns.
- Neat, clean hair.
- Clean and clipped fingernails.
- Keep make-up, jewellery and other accessories to a minimum.
- Ensure you have the address of the location of the interview.
- Find out the name of the interviewer if possible.
- Plan your journey.
- If you are able, travel to the location of the interview before the day of the interview so you know the route.
- Take a contact telephone number for the organisation with you in case of emergencies.
- Take a copy of your CV, qualification certificates and photographic identification with you.
- Allow plenty of time – for delays in public transport or traffic.
- Arrive about 15 minutes early.
- Switch your mobile phone off.
- Be polite and friendly: greet everyone in a courteous and respectful way.
5. Non-verbal Communication:
- Firmly shake the interviewer’s hand with dry hands at the start and end of the interview.
- Sit back and upright in the chair – to look more alert.
- Keep your head up and maintain eye contact.
- Keep your arms unfolded and legs uncrossed. Otherwise this can give a negative impression of being defensive and guarded.
- Put your hands together on the table to avoid fidgeting but you can use them to express yourself.
- Look interested, be positive and enthusiastic.
- Listen carefully and ask for clarification or for the interviewer to repeat the question if needed.
- Take a few moments to think about your answer before responding to a question if needed.
- Be honest.
- Answer questions as fully as you can: try to avoid just saying “yes” or “no”.
- Give specific examples.
- Express information clearly at an appropriate volume and speed.
- Answer thoroughly but stick to the point!
- Ask questions at the end.
- Thank the interviewer for their time and for considering you for the position.
- Leave gracefully!
- Remain positive.
- Within 24 hours, contact the employer and thank them for their time and for considering you for the position, and repeat your interest in the position and in the company after your interview.
- Follow-up with an email or telephone call to determine if the employer has made a decision or is still in the interview process.
- You have done really well to be invited to attend an interview.
- You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.